India: encouraging Ayurveda medical travel

In a recent session on medical travel at the EXPO2020 Dubai, running between October 2021-March 2022, speakers from India were optimistic on the potential of medical tourism and health tourism, particularly Indian traditional medicines.

Indian traditional medicines embracing ayurveda, yoga, unani, siddha and holistic healing are gaining global popularity.  The speakers recognised that while Middle East residents may be hard to tempt to India, there is potential for health tourism, telemedicine, and for medical tourism for overseas workers temporarily in the region.  There was also agreement that India needs a new strategy to integrate telemedicine and Indian traditional medicine in India’s medical tourism services.

The Ministry of Ayush is also encouraging inbound travel for Ayurveda treatments, reporting that it recently started providing Ayurveda medical treatment in India under the medical visa category. An Ayush Export Promotion Council has also been set up. The ministry has started incentivising entrepreneurs and foreign investors who want to establish Ayush wellness centre or tertiary care centres. The Ministry of Ayush is working with the Bureau of Indian Standards to develop standards for Ayush systems.